Making it easy for Google
Posted by John M. Simpson
You'd think with the communications resources that Google has at its disposal, the Internet giant's executives would be able to answer direct questions. An exchange of letters over the last few weeks shows otherwise.
So, today we designed and sent Rachel Whetstone, Vice President for Public Policy and Communication, a form that should make the task easy.
This all started when we examined Google's 1st quarter federal lobbying reports showing what issues they spent $880,000 trying to influence, but not the positions the company took.
He had Ms. Whetstone write us back. The only problem was that her four-page letter did not address the issue of whether Google lobbied against extending HIPPA provisions prohibiting the sale of medical records to cover Personal Health Record (PHR) vendors like Google Health.
So we sent a short letter and asked two questions:
During the debate on the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act (H.R. 1), did Google lobby against extending HIPAA provisions prohibiting the sale of medical records to cover Personal Health Record (PHR) vendors like Google Health?
Did Google lobby Congress to preclude itself from being covered by other provisions of HIPAA? If so, which?
We received an answer that quoted from the earlier letter, but failed to address the questions.
Now we've made it simple. We crafted a form from the May 1 letter and sent it to Ms. Whetstone allowing her to simply check boxes "yes", "no", or "no comment."
I'm watching my inbox .
4/30/2012News ReleaseSANTA MONICA, CA – Consumer Watchdog today called for a Senate hearing into the Google Wi-Spy scandal and urged that a... More >
7/13/2012News StoryMARK GORDON of Whitestone, Queens, figures that buying six Hyundais over the years classifies him as a loyal customer.... More >
1/4/2010Blog PostTuesday is a big day for those trying to figure out just what Google is planning for the increasingly important mobile phone... More >
1/5/2010Blog PostIt's clear that any final version of health reform will be controlled by private, largely for-profit insurance companies. Their... More >
1/5/2010Blog PostGoogle acted again Tuesday to ensure that will be a dominant player in the increasingly important mobile market. It clearly... More >